During the last weekend we had our first trip to the far south of the Davao Region in years. We attended a clan gathering in Sta. Maria, Davao Occidental.
When we last visited the still undivided Davao del Sur Province about seven years ago the main highway was still a two-lane thoroughfare mostly asphalt up to the far end of Jose Abad Santos. Some portions were even not yet paved. But last Saturday and Sunday we found out, to our great surprise, that the highway was already 6-lane with some portions in four-lane and wide two-lane components. Even the once excruciating climb in the dangerous curves going to Sta. Maria and Malita is already much easier and safer with the widened zigzag road with concrete railings in portions that seem to be accident prone.
The climb provides travelers with breath-taking views of the Sta. Maria coves and still relatively green mountains despite the scorching heat of the summer sun and the desert-like temperature of the El Nino roast.
Yes, the Davao City-Davao del Sur-Davao Occidental highway has gone a long way. It is now worthy of praise in terms of width, built and maintenance. We can only thank the past and present national and local government administrations for responding to the need of the time. The development march towards the rural communities especially in the tourism industry now necessitates wider, safer and comfortable access to the country’s tourism assets.
Davao Occidental’s primary tourism attractions are its beaches. Thus, with a highway as wide and quality-paved as the one from Davao City to Davao del Sur and up to the farthest point in the southernmost province of the region, tourism in that area is now getting a big boost.
The two-day clan reunion was actually held at the Colongan Beach Resort in Sta. Maria. But last Sunday, after the close of the clan activities, we took a quick peep at the much talked about Little Boracay beach which is about three and a half kilometers from where the reunion was held.
A portion of the road going to Little Boracay chipped out from the side of the mountain has still to be paved. And with a near vertical cliff on one side it cannot be helped if some travelers on board their vehicles will be having some “revolt” inside their stomach.
However, any discomfort will immediately vanish when the visitors reach the beach area. For all the beautiful scenes the eyes can feast on, who would ever think of their prior uneasy experience?
It’s no wonder that when we inquired about the occupancy of the Little Boracay Resort we were shown by the sales staff of the full booking situation starting this Holy Week up to the first half of the month of May this year.
Indeed the once sleepy town of Sta. Maria, and the rest of the municipalities of Davao Occidental are getting to be the region’s new discovery.
We hope that whoever assumes governance in all levels of the local government in the province after the May 13, 2019 elections will work for sustaining the province’s growth momentum, especially in its tourism sector.
The last Holy Week was one opportunity for everyone to do soul-searching. It was the best time to re-discover one’s self as far as his or her relationship with God.
We have no doubt that each one of us may have some omissions that we may not have even realized because of our daily grind to support our lives. Thus, it is possible we have forgotten some responsibilities attendant to our faith.
The Holy Week gave us longer non-working days. And considering the significance of the commemoration held during the long break, it surely afforded us time to reflect on the things we have done in our life; those that we have to pursue and those that we have to do away with in the context of our religious beliefs.
We have no doubt that every well-meaning Christian will agree with us that when we seek to establish better relations with our God, we also need to re-examine our relations with our fellowmen.
And it is one unwritten rule that changing our relations for the better with God also requires improving to the best level our relations with other people. This, we believe, is the only way of working out for bettering our relations with God.
We did some sacrifices in order to attain this goal. Whether or not the sacrifices we made were enough we have yet to find out.